OPEN STUDIO: Jasen Vodenica

We are pleased to inform you that all through May, as part of the Open Studio program, Jasen Vodenica will use both the space of 7ica and GMK for their research conceptualized as a film preparation.

We will organize open days and visits to the gallery in accordance with the relaxation of the measures concerning the COVID-19 pandemic, and we will share the Information on exact dates and times via e-mail, web and social networks.

OPEN STUDIO: Jasen Vodenica 1.5-31.5.

During my stay at GMK I will continue my research into media and mediation, of materiality and the earth, in preparation for the making of a film. In short, I am researching images and the material conditions for their making.
This research deals with the weird intersections of rare metals and all our lives in these entangled times of ubiquitous networked media. It concerns the hegemonic neocolonial relations of contemporary neoliberal globalization (that is, today’s corporate practices of so-called development and sustainability), through extraction of geological materials that are mined from the earth and re-worked into machines that define our technical media culture. Such sites where material turns gradually closer to media are scattered across the globe; however, I am researching only one such supply chain, and its real conditions; that of Tantalum. My focus is in Rwanda, as well as Macedonia, and the space in between.

In contrast to the geological dimension of deep time, each location has its distinct history and contemporary social dynamics. I seek to develop clear strategies to deal with the inevitable ethnographies and their allegorical dimensions – interested in how our representations of cultures are more often inventions. This leads me towards further analysis of our inventions of an Other. And I will be engaging with a network of African immigrants living in Croatia to deepen my insights into our mythologies about Africa. I aspire towards De Othering Africa and also complicating our often simplistic and erroneous assumptions. The visual appropriation of the other sustained the colonial appropriation of other people. And I am thinking a lot about how previous manifestations of visual culture played its role during the colonial era and how this imperialism twists today.

Lastly, by elaborating on my mapping impulse, I seek to better understand how moving images act as locational media. I am interested in how we cognitively structure spatial knowledge and the implications of particular visual regimes. I will be developing cartographic techniques to interpret my research of historical and contemporary relations, but also to imagine things otherwise, model things otherwise, and inhabit our worlds otherwise.

Through these themes, I am searching for a realism that can engage a paradoxical world of simultaneous connection and divergence, grounded in the geology of the media of representation. Although it combines our fractured, contestable, individual narratives, I seek for what James Clifford calls “big-enough, more-than-local, narratives: histories that travel and translate, but without culminating in a coherent destiny, progressive or apocalyptic.”

Jasen Vodenica (b. Cleveland, Ohio) completed a bachelor’s degree in industrial design at the Ohio State University and graduated from the MA New Media at the Academy of Fine Arts in Zagreb. Vodencia has participated in a number of group exhibitions and has had one solo exhibition titled “Myth of the Machine.” Using installation, performance, mapping, modeling and video, his research-based practice explores the intersections of visuality, ecology, geopolitics, and genealogies of modern technology. He has worked as a project manager at Ann Hamilton Studio, and co-founded the Third Hand Bicycle Cooperative (Columbus, Ohio). He currently lives and works in Zagreb.